Though there isn’t necessarily a correct running form, there is a form that can improve the comfort of your run.
When running, it’s important to keep your chin level, as if there is a thread pulling your head upwards. This step is necessary because it keeps you from straining or injuring your neck while you’re running. Be careful however, that your head doesn’t drop too low, or you risk closing off your airways slightly which can be very dangerous.
You also have to notice where you’re holding tension in your body, once you recognize the tension you can work on releasing it. If you relax the tense areas, you can also lower the amount of energy that you’re exerting during your run.
In terms of your arms, keep your elbows at a rough 90 degree angle and form your hands into loose fits, being mindful not to hold tension in either of these areas. Throughout your run, if you begin to feel tension building up in your arms or your hands, just give them a slight shake to release it.
When it comes to your torso, try to hold it upwards, with a slightly puffed chest, and engage your core to keep a good foundation for your posture. When you begin to run, be sure that you’re not hinging forward at the hips but rather leaning your whole body forward slightly, almost making a diagonal line from your ankles up to your head.
When you take your steps, try to land directly on the middle of your foot in order to evenly spread out your body weight through your foot. If your heels end up hitting the ground first instead, it can create a shock effects that can cause discomfort and even injuries in other areas of your body, especially your knees. Try to picture your foot landing directly under your body weight to keep everything aligned.
For your hips, keep them square in the direction you’re travelling while you run and keep them stable. Core exercises can help you build up stability and endurance for your midsection. Be careful not to point your hips down towards the ground or up towards the sky either, just try to keep them level in front of you.
The swing of your arms is also important while you’re running. Swing your arms forwards, but don’t swing them across your torso, this can throw off not your balance and thus your whole run. Let your arms swing naturally, but try to control them just a bit at the same time.
The biggest aspect to remember is that you need to stay mindful of your body throughout your run. Try to check in now and again, attempting to notice where you’re holding the most tension and working on releasing it for a more comfortable run.
Getting into running can be difficult enough, but when you hold tension in your body you’re exerting more energy into the run than you might realize. If you’re working up to a goal, perhaps a 10 mile race or a half marathon, exerting as little energy as possible is key to getting through it.
In the end, just relax and have some fun!